Hmmm. I'd like to know what the localizers think. Your localization
manager's view isn't shared by most of the localizers and tech writing
firms I know.

I worked for Oracle, which translates much of its documentation from
FrameMaker. They moved to structured FrameMaker, using a variation of
the DocBook DTD as the basis of their EDD. They added some features that
helped localizers detect changed elements. I'm sure that Mercury could
do this as well. You should be able to come up with tools that help you
manage translations even if you stick with unstructured FM.

You may get many responses, but speaking as a former software engineer
AND internationalization engineer AND international product manager AND
technical writer, I'd have to say that the key to any process is senior
management backing. Your senior management has to make the decision that
simultaneous delivery is higher priority than any other issue. Then your
senior management needs to get all the stakeholders in a room to decide
on the compromises that will make that happen.

In the short term, you should go back to your L10N manager and ask him
to ask his localizers what they prefer for a document format. Your
localizers are going to be familiar with a variety of situations, and
since they are the ones who have to do the root work, they need to be

All major software companies in the US are delivering their major
language sets simultaneously with English.


TuVox, Inc.

19050 Pruneridge Avenue Suite 150, Cupertino, CA 95014-0715

Joe Malin       
Technical Writer        
jmalin at <>   
The views expressed in this document are those of the sender, and do not
necessarily reflect those of TuVox, Inc.        


        From: at
[ at] On Behalf
Of Sivia Atar
        Sent: Thursday, November 24, 2005 12:46 AM
        To: 'framers at'
        Subject: Document Localization Process?


        At Mercury we write our source product documentation in
FrameMaker and we produce approximately 35,000 pages of documentation
each year. Most of our documentation is translated into Japanese,
Korean, and Chinese and we're now also starting to translate into some
European languages. Mercury wants to reach the point where it can ship
localized versions of its products at the same time as the English

        Our Localization Manager says that his team cannot efficiently
track changes to our FrameMaker files. This results in delays and makes
it difficult to keep translation costs at a reasonable level.

        I would like to hear how other companies manage the process of
localizing documentation (workflow, communication, and tools).  

        Thanks in advance for any information you can provide.


        Sivia Atar, Documentation Infrastructure Leader, 
satar at <mailto:satar at> 
        direct 972.3.539.9288 fax 972.3.553.1617
        19 Shabazi Street, Yehud, Israel 56100

        Business Technology Optimization <> 


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